Apparently, neighborhood business passings also come in threes. The New Year begins on Capitol Hill with two retailers and a restaurant closing shop. The unifying theme beyond the timing of their closures: The owners of Velouria, Gruv and the Maharaja plan to continue doing business elsewhere in the city with two of the owners saying publicly that high Capitol Hill rents have forced them to move on.
Broadway’s Gruv and the Melrose Market’s Velouria are both sister businesses to other shops in the city — and both siblings will continue to operate, according to their owners. Velouria’s Tes De Luna tells CHS the rent was just too high and the Hill’s response to her offerings too tepid to continue in the Melrose Market:
Really the rent was just too high for the current economy and while we made some really great regulars just not enough support in the hood for us. Sad, but hopefully in a couple years when the economy is better and sales meet the rent they charge we can try again up there.
We found it hard to get the community up there to come to our events… Just not the right timing:(
Velouria opened alongside the new home for Sonic Boom Capitol Hill in late 2009. De Luna is married to Sonic Boom’s Jason Hughes. Boom, which also operates a sibling store in Ballard, appears to be staying put in the Market, for now.
More on the closure in the note posted on the papered windows of Velouria’s former home:
Thanks to Noelle153 for telling us about Velouria closing shop.
Below, another posted goodbye note. The letter is all we know about Gruv’s shutdown. Owner Joanna Gentili has not responded to our inquiries about what lead to the decision to close the used music and movie retailer but the note does say she will continue to operate her Swerve store in the Pike Place Market:
We’ll update if we hear back from Gentili. Thanks to Leedale for the initial post on Gruv’s closure.
Meanwhile, completing the trio, the former Maharaja was already being gutted Tuesday after Friday’s abrupt last call. We’re told the Maharaja will rise again in Pioneer Square, another Capitol Hill business forced to move along to start the New Year because of rising rents. We reported on rumors of a nightclub taking over the Maharaja space on East Pike last January. We’ll watch to see how these spaces are filled as 2011 progresses.